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Manx Express beats the Rest

Mark Cavendish has defended his Scheldeprijs Vlannderen title in Belgium.

Last year when Cav won the 90 year-old classic one day race, it was his first professional victory.

Already in 2008, he has recorded three victories as well as landing the World Madisson Track title with High Road team-mate Bradley Wiggins.

The 21 year-old from Laxey outsprinted Tom Boonen and Robbie McEwan to underline why he is now regarded as the top sprint finisher in the world, and why he has earned the nickname of the Manx Express.

Boonen thought he had done enough to win and put his arms in the air just before the line, but Cavendish punished him for his mistake by snatching victory with amazing acceleration in the final hundred metres of the sprint.

“This is a special race for me because when I won it last year it was my first win as a professional,” Cavendish said after celebrating with his High Road team mates.
“With fifty metres to go I thought I was finished, but as I’ve shown in every other sprint I’ve done this year, I’m two or three kilometres an hour faster than anyone else and came through at the line. Tom put his arms up, I lunged at the line and I knew I’d got it. The team did a perfect job to get me up there. I showed at De Panne that I’ve got the form. I was unlucky at Ghent-Wevelgem and so it’s nice to prove a point.”

The only blemish on another golden day for the Manx star was a tumble during the champagne celebrations on the podium - which has already been posted on youtube!

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